Montana Public Radio

Big Horn County

School hallway.
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School districts across Montana have been in session for a few weeks now and there have already been confirmed cases of the novel coronavirus in schools. But county health departments and school districts are taking varied approaches in how they are disclosing those cases to students, parents, staff and the broader public. MTPR's Aaron Bolton talks with YPR's Nicky Ouellet about his reporting on this.

Crow Tribe.
Josh Burnham / MTPR

The Crow Tribe ordered its members to lock down for two weeks beginning Friday, as tribal leaders moved to slow a sharp spike in coronavirus cases and deaths on yet another reservation in the country.

This week the Crow Tribe Police Department announced safety checks and traffic stops through Aug. 2 to help curb the spread of COVID-19.

On July 21 the Crow Tribal Health Department told Chief of Police Terrill Bracken that 457 individuals on the Crow Reservation had been asked to self quarantine after receiving a positive COVID-19 test result or being directly exposed to someone with the virus.

Crow tribal leaders met with Montana U.S. Senator Steve Daines on July 17 to request support for the new tribal police department’s operations and novel Coronavirus surge planning.

Senator Daines toured a closed Bureau of Indian Affairs (BIA) jail in Crow Agency with members of the Crow Executive Branch, Crow Tribal Police, BIA Police and high ranking local judges.

The new Crow Police Department, which was formed June 27, is seeking to reopen the Crow Agency Jail.

The State of Montana reported its second highest single day uptick in COVID-19 cases on Jun. 30. This comes after a new record count was set earlier this week.

Last weekend, Montana saw its biggest spike yet in COVID-19 cases. YPR reports how the disease is impacting Native Americans across the state.

The Big Horn County Health Department announced June 26 residents are required to wear face coverings or masks outside their homes. 

Gov. Steve Bullock annonces his Coronavirus Task Force on March 3, 2020 in response to the growing number of cases reported in the United States. Bullock says the task force is a multi-agency group that will coordinate public health response.
Corin Cates-Carney / Montana Public Radio

On Wednesday, Gov. Steve Bullock said there is no doubt Montana has seen a spike in COVID-19 cases since moving into Phase 2 of its economic reopening plan in early June.

Montana has reported 766 total known cases. Nearly one-third of those were reported since June 1st. During Wednesday’s press conference, Bullock said 136 people have tested positive for the disease over the past week.


Custer County reported a new cluster of six related COVID-19 cases June 17. As a result, county health officials today issued a two-week recommendation for residents to operate as if they’re back under Phase 1 of Montana’s economic reopening plan.

A county in southeast Montana is issuing a new round of health orders after two dozen cases of the COVID-19 illness were recently identified there through testing.

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